Name: Giselle Aristy
Job: Manager, Integrated Media Solutions
Company: Major League Soccer
LinkedIn: Giselle Aristy
In 140 characters or less, tell us who you are and how you got to where you are today.
“Immigrants, we get the job done”- motto of this first-generation Latina. After working the agency and broadcast side, serendipity brought me to where I always wanted to be – at a sports league office.
What’s one trend in media or marketing that you’re buying or selling?
Selling: data overload. I recently went to a conference and heard the best quote, “Data is the new oil, without refining it, it’s just crude.” We’re in a business where partners rely on metrics and reporting to deem programs successful, but my belief is that raw data needs to be packaged with contextual observations to unpack its true effect. At MLS, we look at every piece of content we put out as how do we best serve our fans, so we actively scour their responses to content to evaluate what they want more of, or not (how did fans respond to it? What were their comments? Feedback?). How partner content pieces serve fans needs it’s integral to what we consider successful or not.
How do you define creativity?
Creativity can have the connotation that to deliver truly innovative ideas they have to be “out of the box” solutions. In my time at MLS, I’ve learned that innovation doesn’t always have to be new and bigger; success can be reshaping what partners currently have for better ways to reach our fans. Partnerships are a give and take, we are constantly looking to optimize the great work we do. Innovating can be working with what you have in different ways. My team has a saying, “Our job is in the details” – looking for the details that can be addressed to be better is one way to be creative.
What’s the project or campaign that you’re proudest of? Why?
To illustrate my point above, the work we’ve done with Audi and their Audi Player Index (API) is proof. Audi is an integral partner to MLS, their staunch support for our league is evident through the development of their API where they’ve added a layer of statistical analysis for our fans. Continuously communicating the API and how it works has been a conversation we engage fans with all year long. This year, we shifted the program by having our MLS talent unpack API performances every month in our new studios (and our awesome telestrator screens). Audi sponsors our MLS Cup Playoffs so fans have been have been keeping up with the API storylines through our playoffs pregame shows like our Halloween edition. They’re committed to raising the profile of the game of soccer in North America and I look forward to the things we have in store for 2019.
What are you working on right now? Any exciting future plans that you’re able to share?
MLS Cup is the biggest priority right now. Our team’s LIVE strategy has come to the forefront in the past year so we’re hunkering down on what the league’s channels coverage plans in market will be. Of course, video is a crucial part of that and leveraging that content on our redesigned app that launched earlier this year will be key. I’m also excited to see the angles our broadcast partners have in store for this year’s MLS Cup, December 8th on Fox and UniMas.
As a connected fan, what’s the best piece of sports content that you have recently consumed?
From a social perspective, there’s too many to name. Personally, and I’m biased, but I think our content teams at MLS do a great job at customizing content specific to the social network where it will resonate best. Copa90 are experts at pushing content from a unique fan perspective. But nothing beats great storytelling. With that in mind, my favorite sports documentary to date is, ESPN’s 30 for 30 The Two Escobars.
What’s been the biggest high and low of working in sports?
High: Attending the events! Now working in the industry, I attend games with a different eye, always looking out for who is doing what. Sponsors are a telling piece of what that team/league stands for and who their fan is. Our All-Star weekend this year in Atlanta is an example of that; it told the story of how soccer in America is being fueled by a young, urban, multicultural fan. I’m very proud to be a part of that.
Low: For me, it was, and continues to be, learning the game. I’ll be honest, I didn’t grow up playing soccer so I’ve had to make a dedicated effort to watch the League and absorb our content. Although I say low because there was a tough period of figuring things out, that’s the beauty of it too. Coming in and looking at things with a new eye has been the best learning experience and drives my curiosity.
Melissa Marchionna shares how MLS is innovating, not putting a hold on creativity, and her personal journey to MLS.
What’s one element of the sports industry that you’d like to see change?
The same value and support for women’s sports. Organizations must push for more resources for training, development and support all around. Women’s sports cannot be the afterthought.
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